SAS: Who Dares Wins season 7 began last week on Channel 4. Twenty men and women were the latest recruits to take on the challenge. This season the show has moved from Scotland to Jordan and promises the new recruits the toughest SAS selection course yet.
In episode 1, the theme was Brotherhood. The new recruits arrived to the Wadi Rum desert aboard a bus. They were soon ambushed by the Directing Staff (DS) team which for the first time saw the UK team up with the US. The DS for this series saw fan favourites Foxy and Billy return and they were joined by new Chief Instructor, Rudy Reyes, an ex-US Special Forces operator and Remi Adeleke, a former US Navy SEAL.
The recruits were immediately put to the test with a punishing beasting in the desert heat. This included squats, bear crawls and a run to their desert base. Once there the DS introduced themselves and set out their rules. Annoyed at some of the recruits not standing still, the DS made the recruits submerge themselves in water and then crawl through the sand. The recruits were then hosed down and given numbered arm bands and bergens which contained their kit. They were then ordered to strip and dress before being dismissed to their barracks.
For the first challenge, the recruits faced crossing a 300 foot ravine, 165 feet above ground. This involved moving sideways along a thin rope which demanded endurance, core strength and balance. After a demonstration by Foxy on what was required, the recruits then took turns to attempt the feat. The first 9 recruits failed the task before number 17, Pahrnia completed it successfully. She was followed by number 3, Claire who also passed. In total, only 6 recruits out of 20 passed.
Back at base, the DS held a meeting to discuss progress and the recruits who stood out. They decided to bring in number 3 for tactical questioning. She was faced with Billy and Remi who asked her about herself and her childhood. They asked her to slow down a bit and eventually cut her off by calling for the guard.
After being awake for 17 hours, with only 2 hours rest and a single 400 calorie meal the recruits were settling in their barracks. The DS burst in and demanded the recruits joined them immediately on the parade deck in full kit. They gave a review of the day and were disappointed. They decided to inspect their gear and found that 7 recruits hadn’t refilled their water canteens. The DS gave them another beasting for failing this basic task. Number 11, JJ stood out for not keeping up. After the beasting the DS asked if anyone would like to Voluntarily Withdraw (VW) but no one did.
The next day, the recruits were set a new task. They were split into small groups and faced with a horrendous CS gas task. Wearing full hazmat suits and gas masks, the recruits had to enter a gas chamber and removing their gas masks in order to answer basic questions. They then had to find a way out of the chamber while under the effects of the gas. The DS observed who stayed calm, who panicked and which recruits worked together or only looked out for themselves.
At the end of the episode, after another meeting, the DS decided to bring number 11 in for tactical questioning. He was also faced with Billy and Remi who asked how he was managing. He spoke of his difficult childhood, growing up and how he was struggling after his eldest brother was murdered in prison. The DS gave some advice to help him overcome his struggles.
In episode 2, despite a psychologically and physically challenging first stage of selection, all 20 recruits still remain. This time, the recruits are paired up, as one will freefall off the top of a 50-foot cliff, while their partner must break their fall before they hit the ground.
They also face a brutal beasting in the desert, which pushes some recruits to the edge, and are forced to make a split-second decision about whether to fire in a combat situation. This episode also deals with overcoming family tragedy and childhood adversity.
SAS: Who Dares Wins series 7 continues at 9pm Sunday 17th April 2022 on Channel 4. Preview episode 2 with our gallery: